Osteoarthritis Prevention: Important for the Young and Old

In April, our special issue of BJSM reminds athletes, clinicians, and coaches that prevention of osteoarthritis is important for both younger and older athletes. Check these papers online first if you have BJSM access – otherwise they’ll be up on April 1st.

Dennis Caine and Yvonne Golightly review  the epidemiology of OA, the effect of acute injury, epiphysial growth plate injury as well as the link between level of sports participation and OA during childhood. They suggest a link between youth sports injuries (most notably in the knee or ankle) and OA. Thus, efforts to prevent sport-related early-onset OA should begin during the childhood years. (Read full article here)

On the other side of the age spectrum, Jiri Dvorak’s review stems from Klunder et al’s seminal investigation that OA of the hip was significantly more frequent in retired football players than controls.  Dvorak assesses FIFA data on injury prevention programs and injury related drug use. The team found a problem of excessive medication use in top-level female and male international football players. “Research into the early onset of osteoarthritis in sports and in particular the most popular sport, football, should include an early diagnosis of small cartilage lesions in the joints which might be treated and reduce the later onset of osteoarthritis.” (Read full article here)

Hideki Takeda et al. offer a review of OA treatments (in both athletes and non-athletes). Unfortunately, surgical or physical rehabilitation does not preclude OA in the knee, and injury prevention is therefore imperative. (Read full article here)

Thanks to Arthritis Research who sponsored the Arthritis in Sport Conference in London in October 2010 (link to BJSM October 2010)

Thanks to the IOC for their support of 4 IPHP Issues annually – see the April 2011 theme issue for the full set of key papers. This issue will be given free to all the attendees of the IOC World Conference on Prevention of Injury and Illness Prevention in Sport (Monaco, 7-9 April).

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